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What you should know about heart disease in Australia

Thursday, February 2018

Cardiovascular disease kills one Australian every 12-minutes – another reason why training regularly is TOTALLY worth it!

By Harriet Edmund


By training with Step into Life, you are on the way to reducing your risk of heart disease – one of Australia’s most prevalent chronic diseases.

No doubt you are already reaping the benefits of regular exercise. But, when Harvard University research shows as little as 15-minutes of exercise a day helps fend off high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes and a host of other chronic diseases, it must put an extra spring in your step.

Sadly, despite the advances in medical technology and awareness of the risks of poor heart health, heart disease and stroke are still a leading cause of death in this country.

In fact, according the Heart Foundation, cardiovascular disease kills one Australian every 12-minutes. Plus, it’s estimated, more than 400,000 Australians have had a heart attack at some time in their lives.

The risk factors:

If you have one or more of these risk factors, it’s time to see your GP:

  • High bloody pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Overweight or obese
  • Physical inactivity
  • Low fruit and vegetable intake
  • Having too much alcohol or smoking

If this is you, don’t worry – you’re not alone. Research shows, 25 per cent of Australians have three or more of these risk factors! However, it is worth seeking advice from your GP and trainer about how to improve your health and well-being.

How exercise can help:

The good news is, regular, moderate physical activity is great for your heart health. What’s more, it’s never too late to start. After all, any physical activity is better than none – in fact, it’s better to start with a little, and then build up over time.

If you aim to reach 2.5 to five hours of moderate intensity physical activity or 1.25 to 2.5 hours of vigorous intensity physical activity each week – you (and your heart) should be doing well!

Plus, muscle strengthening activities such as Step into Life toneup sessions at least twice a week are recommended for optimising your heart health.

Other things to consider to improve your heart health are:

  • Regular visits to your GP to help manage your blood pressure
  • Stop smoking if applicable
  • Lower your alcohol consumption
  • Meditate and relax as much as possible
  • Optimise your sleep
  • Manage any psychological stress and hostility and
  • Minimise social isolation

Find out more about heart disease in Australia. You might also like this article on Body Mass Index and whether it really matters.

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What you should know about heart disease in Australia